Jorge Sampaoli says he wanted Arturo Vidal as well as Alexis Sánchez at Marseille

In an interview with Chilean outlet ADN, former Marseille coach Jorge Sampaoli – who left at the start of the summer over a rift in the club’s transfer policy, has pointed out that his aim was to have both Alexis Sánchez and Arturo Vidal at the club.

Both players were managed by Sampaoli during his time with the Chilean national team, and left Inter this past transfer window having played secondary roles for the Nerazzurri. While the former Arsenal forward would indeed go on to sign for Marseille – and has four goals since the start of the season – the midfielder instead went to Flamengo in Brazil.

“I always tried to bring Alexis to the club and when I planned out the season he was a priority for me. Now, Sánchez has more than enough quality to thrive there, but if the conditions aren’t there then it could be counterproductive.”

“I wanted Alexis and Vidal at Marseille, because they know how to move around, despite the friction of French football.”

“Sánchez can’t find space and spends a lot of time without touching the ball or thriving with his ability. Teams in France are increasingly physical, but if you know how to position yourself, it’s easier.”


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